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GTog
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2006 8:35 pm
Posts: 411
Location: United States
PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:32 am 
 

I was going to put this in the 'Digital Release' thread, but the debate over there was way to much fun and I didn't want to derail it.

We have been discussing over here some graphs that oneyoudontknow put together showing the number of releases per year, by type. It shows a dramatic collapse in the number of demos released, starting in 2005.

After a little back and forth, I think we're in agreement that it's because bands were shifting to digital-only releases, especially for their first efforts, and therefore weren't allowed in the archives. So now that digital-only releases are allowed, the numbers should start to recover.

Except for the demo category, I suspect, which is why I think we need a new category for digital releases. After an admittedly brief stroll through sites like MySpace and Bandcamp, it is apparent to me that bands just don't call them demos anymore. Bands are lumping together their first batch of songs under some title, putting some artwork with it, and calling it their first album, or sometimes EP. Nobody puts up a rought cut demo of anything.

So, do we call these as we see them, digital releases? Or do we still try to call some "demos" if they sound... I don't know, demo-ish? Or only if the band explicitly identifies the tracks as demo versions?

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Ribos
Radioactive Man

Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2006 10:10 pm
Posts: 3029
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 3:21 pm 
 

To answer the question as posed in the thread title, no, I don't believe we need a new release type. MA does not distinguish releases based on format of media (i.e. tape, vinyl, CD), so there's definitely no need to make a new type for digital. This is not what your post directly argues for, but that's what it boils down to.

Think on this: how many albums/demos/EPs have been reissued with new tracks? And how often are these bonus tracks not part of the same recording session that yielded the original release? If a band wants to digitally release a demo, and a few months later add a few more tracks to it, I just see that in the same light.

Okay, now how about all those "unincorporated" tracks they upload to their website without putting on a specific release? We just don't list those here. Pre-2013, MA would list digital releases for bands that already had physical releases, and such tracks as described above just wouldn't get mentioned. I see no reason for this policy to change.

Of course, I am not a moderator nor site owner nor anyone with any kind of importance, but that's my two cents' worth of an opinion.
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GTog
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2006 8:35 pm
Posts: 411
Location: United States
PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:43 pm 
 

A couple of very interesting points. This is just me blueskying the possible headaches that will come with trying to classify releases that don't have to follow physical format rules. I think mostly bands will continue to adhere to the old rules, for awhile. But I also think you can count on bands drifting away from pre-packaged collections of tracks that may have been written and recorded months apart. They'll record them, put them up on Bandcamp or something, and start trying to make a few bucks. They won't wait until they collect 7 or 8, just so they can have an "album". There's no reason to do that in the digital world. The only reason anyone does it in the physical world is cost effectiveness.

Maybe rather than a whole new category there could be a checkbox denoting a release as digital-only, just to distinguish it from possible future physical releases. I'd hate to see the archives get all messy by leaving it to the notes.

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